Culture – Daily News Egypt https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com Egypt’s Only Daily Independent Newspaper In English Wed, 17 Jul 2019 15:16:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.1 Renovation of Egyptian Museum to include installing new lighting, display systems https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/16/renovation-of-egyptian-museum-to-include-installing-new-lighting-display-systems/ Tue, 16 Jul 2019 20:10:49 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702878 The meeting comes to discuss the first phase of the museum’s renovation after the artefacts collection of King Tutankhamun were transferred to the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in preparation for its opening in 2020.

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Minister of Antiquities, Khaled Anany, met on Tuesday with the directors of the five museums participating in the renovation of the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square, including the Louvre, the Egyptian Museum of Turin (Museo Egizio), Egyptian Museum of Berlin, the British Museum, and the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden, in addition to the French Institute for Oriental Archaeology in Cairo.

The meeting comes to discuss the first phase of the museum’s renovation after the artefacts collection of King Tutankhamun were transferred to the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in preparation for its opening in 2020.

Assistant to Minister of Antiquities, Nevine Nezar, said in a press release that the renovation plan includes installing up to date display and lighting systems.

The renovation plan aims to list the Egyptian Museum on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The operations are funded by an EU grant of €3.1m.

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Naguib Mahfouz museum: veteran novelist’s captivating life journey beneath walls of Ottoman empire building  https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/16/naguib-mahfouz-museum-veteran-novelists-captivating-life-journey-beneath-walls-of-ottoman-empire-building/ Tue, 16 Jul 2019 16:20:39 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702837 Museum located in Al-Gamaleya district, where he lived all of his life, shaped his soul into shining dynamo that brought world irreplaceable literary treasures

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Inside a narrow, unpaved alley in Al-Gamaleya district in the heart of Old Cairo, the glamour of the timeworn, authentic building of Tkeit Abu el-Dahab, overcomes the journey one has to go through in order to reach the targeted gem of the Naguib Mahfouz Museum.

Surrounded by dozens of locals of days long gone are grocery shops, and butchers, and the place shines like a magnetic time machine taking visitors into the legacy of the Ottoman era, and the overwhelming joy of Mahfouz’s treasures.

The once known as Muhammad Bek Abu El Dahab Complex, has been officially inaugurated on Sunday as the museum of the late Nobel winner genius novelist, Naguib Mahfouz.

The antique building is listed as one of the country’s heritage buildings. With the cooperation of both the ministries of antiquities and culture, it was turned into an official museum of the late writer where all  his belongings were put on display.

The Minister of Culture, Inas Abdel-Dayem, inaugurated the museum, with the Minister of Antiquities, Khaled El-Anany, in the presence of a number of foreign ambassadors.

Abdel-Dayem said the museum adds to Egypt’s achievements, in that the displayed items tell the story of Mahfouz, who managed to attract the world’s eyes toward Egypt’s modern art.

Commemorating his name in Al-Gamaleya, the place where he lived in all of his life and which shaped his soul into the shining dynamo that brought the world irreplaceable literary treasures, the Muhammad Bek Abu El Dahab Complex was the best antiquated building to turn into the museum.

Abu El-Dahab was one of the leaders of Egypt’s Ottoman Empire. He was dubbed Abu El Dahab (The father of the Gold) for his known generosity that led him to often distribute gold to the poor and needy.

The building, which was turned into the current museum, is part of a huge complex Abu El-Dahab built, consisting of a mosque, school, a water tub for animals, and residential area like the known Ottoman and Fatimid era’s building designs.

The complex was built in 1774 AD. The process of turning the Tkeit into the museum started in 2006, right after Mahfouz’s death. It took 13 years to have a museum that matches the reputation and international image of Mahfouz. 

The museum is the “Tkeit” building of the complex, which is a three floor residential area for the homeless, and the people who came to Egypt on visits and needed a place to stay.   

For his side, El-Anany praised the museum’s location in the middle of Al-Azhar area, which reflects the true spirit of Old Cairo that stirred the beauty of Mahfouz’ writings, and produced valuable content that had an international reach.

Born, and bred in Al-Gamaleya, Mahfouz’s inspiration was always reflected in his novels, bringing the world one of its most astonishing masterpieces, that chronicled the area of Old Cairo, like Bayn El Kasrain “Between the Two Palaces”, a trilogy that chronicled Egyptian society in the 1920s.

The museum takes visitors into a tour of Mahfouz’s life journey, highlighting the main stops in separate rooms. Renovated with grey and pale navy colours to look like the original form it was built in, the place is filled with his pictures, and his most famous quotes taken from his novels. The quotes describe his perspectives on life, women, society, and art.

All the showcased belongings were gifted from Mahfouz’s daughter, Om Kalthoum, to the ministry of culture, according to Abdel-Dayem.

It contains four main libraries: Mahfouz’s personal library that has the 1,091 books he owned all of his life and spent his time roaming among them, a literary library that offers visitors 119 of the world’s most known and famous literature, a third library of Mahfouz’s 169 art masterpieces, and the fourth is a general one with 165 books in different fields. 

The museum also offers people two workshop halls dedicated to novels, script writing, short stories workshops, and other activities related to writing as well as signing books.

A hall in the museum is dedicated to the medals and awards Mahfouz received in his life, including the most important award, which is the Nobel prize in Literature in 1988.

Mahfouz is the only Arab writer to have ever won the award until this day.

The alley hall in the museum is dedicated to the novels Mahfouz wrote out of Al-Gamaleya district. In his novels, Mahfouz opened a window for readers to explore the alleys of Old Cairo, like Haret El Maqaq, Midaq Alley, Bayen Qasren, and Sugar Street. 

A film of the neighbourhood Mahfouz grew up in is also being showcased at the hall, in order to introduce people to the world Mahfouz opened his eyes to.

As for the biography hall, it welcomes visitors to introduce them to Mahfouz’s family, through a number of pictures of him and his closest siblings.

The bemoaning room holds one of the veteran writer’s most important achievements in Egypt, which is the Nile Necklace he received for enriching the literature scene in the world. 

For those who are passionate about diving deep into the place from which the captivating literature work comes, the manifestation room brings the desk and chair he sat on writing hundreds of books, with the eye glasses he always wore.

The museum also takes people to the journey of the films which were taken from the novels he wrote in the filmographia hall. It displays footage from famous films based on his writings.

The museum documents all the phases of Mahfouz’s lifetime, including his assassination attempt. At the dream of departure hall, there are the incidents of the two Islamists who stabbed him in the neck. They aimed to kill him for his controversial novel, Awlad Haretna (Children of Gebelawi). This led to a permanent disability causing him to be unable to write except for a few minutes every day. 

In 2006, Egypt bid farewell to the one of a kind novelist, as he passed away at the age of 96. 

The museum is open for a month for free.

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Exhibition chronicles contradictory media coverage of life of Egypt’s last queen, Fawzia https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/15/exhibition-chronicles-contradictory-media-coverage-of-life-of-egypts-last-queen-fawzia/ Mon, 15 Jul 2019 11:30:04 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702743 Local press portrayed her as modern Egyptian woman, Western press presented her as a helpless woman

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Behind mesmerising gazes of Queen Fawzia Fuad, lies thousands of hidden stories that no one knew about until she closed her eyes for the last time.

The coloured, almond shaped, wide eyes of Egypt’s last official princess held the passion of a young woman’s dream of changing the world into a better place. This mirrored the power royal women had.

Over five decades after she was trooped of her place, the queen’s descending life sparked the curiosity of the Egyptian-American 10th grade student, Jana Amin, leading, with the cooperation and supervision of the American University in Cairo (AUC) into the launch of recently open exhibition, “Princess Fawzia: The Duality of Egyptian Womanhood through Western and Egyptian Eyes.”

Held at AUC’s Rare Books and Special Collections Library, the exhibition showcases the local and international media coverage the princess received throughout her life, since she was born as the youngest sister of King Fouad, until she passed away four years ago in Alexandria.

The exhibition came to life as a result of Amin’s research at Harvard, Oxford universities, the KEW National Archive in the UK, and the AUC’s Rare Books Library.

Curated by Iman Morgan, an expert at AUC’s Rare Books and Special Collections Library and one of the researchers, who helped Amin with the research for over a year, and worked on collecting all the possible journals that were published about Fawzia.

Fawzia’s life media coverage was rich in content. The young royal princess became Queen of Iran at a very young age, as she married Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Local and international newspapers and magazines closely followed the boat of the young couple as it sailed and tied political knots between Egypt and Iran.

“Growing up surrounded by strong Egyptian women, I experienced the disconnect between the women in my own life and those portrayed in the media. I felt strongly that Egyptian women ought to take control of their narrative,” 16-year old Amin said, adding “Discovering Princess Fawzia by mere accident while googling one day, sent me on a journey of discovery, uncovering the fascinating life of this princess.”

The exhibition showcases the contradictory media portrayals the late princess received. While local press portrayed her as a model of modern Egyptian womanhood, western press striped her from her agency, and presented her as a fawn.

The exhibition is divided into four themes, each presented the media coverage of a phase of her long journey; her early life, the two weddings she had; the first with Pahlavi and the second to Ismail Chirine, Egypt’s former minister of defense, and her death.

The exhibition took place on July 4, commemorating Fawzia’s fourth death anniversary, and is running until August 31.

Early life is the name tag of the first showcased timeworn papers. 

The early life section contains the announcement of her birth in the state-run newspaper, Al-Ahram, in 1921, with a number of pictures of her with her siblings playing in Al-Montazah Palace in Alexandria.

The theme also contains pictures of Fawzia with her nannies, and her first favourite teacher. Her stories are shown through a number of local magazines, such as Al-Musawar magazine, which played an essential part in documenting her four life phases.

Among the displayed documents was a letter the princess wrote to her teacher at a young age. In it, she described the love and admiration she has for her, and how she taught her everything she knows in life.

Amid their tremendous efforts in collecting all the possible pictures, and news portrayals documenting the life phases of the beloved princess, the AUC was gifted the coins of Muhammed Ali’s family up until the era she was the queen of Egypt. They were gifted by Mohammed Sadwq, an antique collector.

The second theme, was the one that attracted international media the most, which is her two weddings. Marrying the King of Iran, princess Fawzia had two weddings, one in Egypt and the other in Iran.

Dozens of publications highlighted the wedding of the year, and local magazines followed the tiniest details of the gala event. It was featured as one of the most luxurious weddings in Egypt’s recent history. 

The dedicated cabinets for the theme displayed the royal pictures of the two weddings, the souvenirs which were distributed to the elites and the royal family members, the magazine special issues that chronicled the Iranian diplomatic delegation’s visit to Egypt to request the marriage of Fawzia to the King of Iran, the preparations of the big day, and the journey to Iran where she had the second wedding.

Through the several months of the research phase, the AUC researchers team looked for the siblings of ministers hoping to find anyone who could have attended the wedding and has memories of it.

Curator Morgan believes that this era in princess Fawzia’s life held most of the media attraction despite being discreet.

“Foreign media portrayals wrote the most about her first marriage. They always portrayed her as a helpless woman striped of her agency and wrote that she was sold for political reasons. Magazines only wrote about the marriage as a diplomatic deal for which the princess paid its price, without mentioning her power or determination,” Morgan told Daily News Egypt.

Living for over a year within the stories of the late princess, Morgan believes that these stories were not correct.

“She was a humble woman, yet she was very strong, keen on making a difference in other people’s lives, and empowering women of her country. That was never displayed but in local media,” she explained.

The community work of princess Fawzia was the element that captivated the hearts of the researchers the most, leading to display it as the exhibition’s third section.

Princess Fawzia was focused on educating women in her hometown, and supporting them with the required elements to become fully empowered.

The exhibition chronicled the news of the princess who opened up a number of hospitals and closely followed the food prepared for the patients. It also puts on display a number of pictures featuring the beauty queen as a volunteer nurse in World War II with the army to help wounded soldiers.

“It was not only that she was personally engaged in society, she further encouraged other ladies to follow her footsteps and have an effective role in society,” Morgan added.

The exhibition displayed Fawzia’s dedication in a number of charities such as inaugurating schools for underprivileged young girls.

This period of time synchronised with her divorce from the king of Iran, which Amin found at the KEW National Archive in the United Kingdom.

The fourth section, which brings the last phase of her life to the public, showcased her second marriage after which she started disappearing from public life at her husband’s request.

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Late Dynasty tombs unearthed in Dahshur  https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/13/late-dynasty-tombs-unearthed-in-dahshur/ Sat, 13 Jul 2019 19:53:21 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702583 Announcement came at celebration of restoring Bent Pyramid

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The Ministry of Antiquities announced the discovery of a number of wooden and stone tombs belonging to the Middle Kingdom in Dahshur. 

The discovery was announced at the Bent Pyramid’s opening ceremony on Saturday in Dahshur after restoration.

The opening was attended by 40 foreign ambassadors and representatives of UNESCO; the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa Waziri; and the Giza Governor Ahmed Rashed.

In his speech, the Minister of Antiquities Khaled El-Anany said that the ministry also discovered a number of well-preserved mummies inside some of the unearthed tombs, as well as a number of wooden masks, of which some were not completely shaped.

Anany added that the excavation mission found a 60-metre-long ancient wall that showcases the architecture of the Middle Kingdom. 

A number of cutting instruments belonging to the Late Dynasty were also discovered in the site, which tell that it was used at later eras from the mummies were buried at.

Anany said the Bent Pyramid and all the other pyramids located in Dahshur are listed at the UNESCO’s heritage list. The pyramid was built by the 4th dynasty royal Pharaoh, Sneferu, who also built two other pyramids in the area.

Waziri also stated in his speech that the restoration process included building interior and exterior stairs to facilitate the process for visitors roaming around and inside the pyramid. He added that the ministry placed a lightening network, as well as fully renovating the pharaoh’s burial chamber inside the pyramid.

He said that the mission started working in the area from August 2018 until April 2019, since they came across a number of stone and granite blocks which usually indicates having burial antiquities underneath.

He shared that the mission will keep digging in this area looking for further secrets they believe it holds. 

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Alexandria’s 17th International Summer Festival kicks off July 26 https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/10/alexandrias-17th-international-summer-festival-kicks-off-july-26/ Wed, 10 Jul 2019 20:36:28 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702402 The festival kicks off with a concert by the Jordanian young band JadaL.

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Bibliotheca Alexandrina announced the launch of the 17th International Summer Festival on July 26, with a large number of performances taking place overviewing the charming sea of the coastal city.

The long awaited, annual festival comes bringing a large number of various performances by prominent Egyptian and foreign artists.

Running for almost two months, the theatre of the Bibliotheca is to host an art show for hundreds of people, as well as workshops and lectures in numerous fields.

The festival kicks off with a concert by the Jordanian young band JadaL.

Popular Egyptian singer, Mohamed Mohsen, will also perform a concert one week after the start of the festival.

The festival will also host a concert for veteran musician, Omar Khairat, for two days at the beginning of August.

Among the Egyptian artists performing at the festival are Nesma Abdelaziz, Ali El Haggar, Medhat Saleh, Masar Egbari, and Khaled Selim.

Egyptian comedian, Ahmed Amin, will also take over the stage for two days presenting his latest play, Amin wa Shurakah (Amin and His Partners)

Islands, Maxim, and Might be Switched Off are three Egyptian fiction films that will also be screened among the annual cultural festival.

The 17th International Summer Festival runs until August 31. Tikets are sold both online and through the Bibliotheca box office.

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Sixth International Caricature Gathering revives cultural figures https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/09/sixth-international-caricature-gathering-revives-cultural-figures/ Tue, 09 Jul 2019 11:30:48 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702242 Naguib Mahfouz main character of gathering, portrayed in over 100 caricatures

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It was once said that caricatures are the putting of faces of jokes on bodies of a truth. When speaking of Egyptians, the art of ironically reflecting reality reaches its peak bringing the ultimate creativity and the beauty of illustrating figures at the Sixth International Caricature Gathering.

The exhibition of the cartoon characters kicked off on Sunday.

Among the walls of the timeworn, authentic Amir Taz Palace, overlooking the Blue Nile boat, the mansion, belonging to Egypt’s glorious era, reflected its lustre on the showcased caricatures displayed by almost 350 cartoonists from 71 countries.

The  Sixth International Caricature Gathering is organised by the Egyptian Caricature Association, The Cultural Development Fund, and Faculty of Applied Arts, Minya University, under the support of Egypt’s Ministry of Culture.

Over 420 caricatures were displayed on the walls of Amir Taz Palace’s large halls. Under the theme of culture, the participating artists all drew caricatures of the world’s most famous cultural figures including prominent writers, musicians, and artists.

In this year’s edition, over 1,800 art works were submitted to participate by artists from all over the world, yet the selection was limited due to criteria selected by a committee of veteran figures including cartoon artists Mohamed Effat, Farouq Mousa, and Amna El Hammady, as well as journalist Imad Gomaa.

Veteran Egyptian novelist, Naguib Mahfouz, was the main character of the gathering, portrayed in over 100 caricatures by large number of artists showcasing him in different forms, colours, and cartoon poses.

Kuwait is this year’s guest of honour. In his speech, the Head of Kuwait Cartoon Assembly, Muhammad Thalab, said that selecting his country to be this year’s guest of honour means a lot to the caricature scene in Kuwait leading it to be spotlighted internationally.

Thalab added that for Kuwaiti cartoonists to participate in such a gathering gives them the artistic accreditation each artist desires. He further explained that Kuwait’s active movements in developing the caricature art led the country to be one of the Gulf’s most leading countries in that field.

“For around 50 years, the cartoon art scene in Kuwait has been leaving a bright mark in the development of the caricature scene in Gulf countries,” he highlighted.

Thalab continued by stating that some of Kuwait’s most prominent artists participated in this year’s gathering.

The gathering focuses on cultural figures from across the world. On the second day of its opening, the gathering opened an exhibition of the prominent Chinese philosopher, Laozi. The exhibition is held at the Chinese Cultural Centre in Egypt.

Under the slogan of ‘Laozi through World’s Eyes’, the exhibition showcases 40 caricatures portrayed by 40 artists from across the world.

The gathering runs until July 21.

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Public libraries to teach children Heliography https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/09/public-libraries-to-teach-children-heliography/ Tue, 09 Jul 2019 11:00:31 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=702240 The programme aims to revive the principles of Ancient Egyptian civilization and teach children what the culture was like, as an inseparable part of the Egyptian culture and heritage.

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Centuries after the ancient Egyptian civilization has come to an end, Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities wants to revive its glory by teaching young generations all about it.

In its latest initiative, the ministry launched a teaching Heliographic language programme to children.

After the International Museum Day, the ministry cooperated with a number of public libraries in various districts in Cairo to teach young generations a language that is no longer heard, but only seen in museums.   

The programme aims to revive the principles of Ancient Egyptian civilization and teach children what the culture was like, as an inseparable part of the Egyptian culture and heritage.

Rasha Kamal, the director of cultural development department at the ministry of antiquities, stated in a press release that the programme includes a number of lectures and interactive sessions on the Ancient Egyptian civilization languages, especially Heliography.

She also added that the programme includes workshops to teach the participating children their names in Heliography, like ancient kings and queens.

Kamal explained that the programme mainly targets to develop the children’s heritage awareness, through connecting the books they find at the library with the antiquities showcased at the various museums in Egypt.

The programme, which will take place at nine different libraries across the country, also teaches children about the sports commonly practiced across the eras. This is partially alongside Egypt’s hosting of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

Lasting for two months, the sessions take place at the Egypt Public Library, and the cultural centres in Heliopolis, Maadi, Shoubra, Helwan, and Sixth of October public libraries.

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Tour in State Hermitage, Russia’s first public museum  https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/07/tour-in-state-hermitage-russias-first-public-museum/ Sun, 07 Jul 2019 11:00:28 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701977 Museum established in 1764, contains over 3m artefacts including Pharaonic ones

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St Petersburg- The State Hermitage is considered the first public museum in Russia and one of the iconic places in the city of Saint Petersburg. It contains over 3m artefacts.

Artefacts in the Hermitage include paintings, graphic works, sculptures, works of applied art, archaeological works, and numismatic objects.

The Hermitage was established in 1764 when Russian Empress Catherine the Great acquired an impressive collection of works from the Berlin merchant Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky. 

Extending over 233,345 sqm, the Hermitage consists of several buildings including the famous Winter Palace building. It also hosts a number of internal science and art museums, and laboratories. 

One of the most important labs in the Hermitage is the Laboratory for Scientific Restoration of Mural Painting. Olga Khakhanova, a fine art restorer of the laboratory, told Daily News Egypt that the restorers and chemists in the lab have developed a method that allowed for taking the murals which were discovered in many places safely and bringing them to the lab for further restoration. 

The laboratory has paintings that date back to the sixth and seventh century and different historical eras including paintings belonging to Pharaonic eras. One of these old paintings is a Pharaonic cover of a coffin. 

Khakhanova added that most of the pieces and paintings in the lab came from unknown source and they do not actually know the history of many of them. Answering DNE’s question about the age of the Pharaonic cover, Khakhanova said the Hermitage made its own expeditions to Egypt, but she does not know from where exactly this Pharaonic cover came from. However, she believes it dates back to the 3rd century BC.  

Another important lab is the Laboratory for Scientific Restoration of Photos (LSRP) which is the base of scientific and technical research, storage, and restoration of photographic materials of the museum. The photographic collection of the State Hermitage includes about 500m works.   

In 2011, the lab was established by the Hermitage in cooperation with the Andrew W Mellon Foundation. 

Tatyana Sayatina, the head of the laboratory, told reporters, including DNE, that the Department of Scientific Restoration and Conservation has a huge department of restoration consisting of 10 labs and employing around 130 illustrators.

“It is the newest lab in the museum as it was founded in 2011 as a result of a joint project of the Hermitage and an American programme from the United States. It was among a long list of projects lasting for five years,” Sayatina said. 

She added that according to this project the team of the laboratory is not only sponsored by the American side but also had a chance to study under leading illustrators. 

“We did not only have classes abroad but we also had experts in photo illustration who came here to the lab and taught us about the process,” Sayatina noted. The staff of the Laboratory for Scientific Restoration of Photos consists of one chemist and five illustrators, according to Sayatina.

About saving the photos, Sayatina said that the photos are fixed from the four corners with no glue used, and that all the materials have been tested to ensure that it does not cause any harm when put on photographs, and that these tests are committed to the international standards.

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Ministry of Antiquities escalates sale of Tutankhamen’s statue https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/06/ministry-of-antiquities-escalates-sale-of-tutankhamens-statue/ Sat, 06 Jul 2019 20:57:25 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701898 Egypt claims statue illegally smuggled from country, Christies refuse to announce buyer

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Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities called for an urgent meeting on Monday, in order to discuss the escalating measure the government is to take after the sale of Tutankhamun’s statue at Christie’s Auction House, despite the country’s outrage.

The meeting will be held by the Egypt’s National Committee for the Repatriation of Stolen Antiquities, with the attendance of Minister of Antiquities, Khaled El-Anany, and Zahi Hawass, the former minister of antiquities.   

The 3,000-year-old statue was purchased last Thursday for £4,746,250 by an anonymous buyer and the auction house refused to mention his name. The five-minute auction took place despite Egypt’s statements that the statue was illegally stolen from Egypt.

Irrespective of continuous requests, Christie’s Auction House did not provide any authentication evidence of the statue, and it did not announce its provenance.

It only previously stated, according to the Financial Times, that it dates back to 1960’s “when Christie’s said it formed part of the collection of Prince Wilhelm von Thurn und Taxis, a German collector. It subsequently passed through the hands of dealers until bought by the current owners in 1985.”

Egypt claims that the statue was illegally smuggled from the country. 

“I believe that it was taken out of Egypt illegally,” Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities told Reuters news agency, adding that the auction house did not provide any official documents to prove the origin of the sold statue.

The sold statue of Egypt’s most famous pharaoh is 11 inches high and carved from brown quartzite.

Christie’s published the official results of selling the statue on its website, stating that according to London’s Head of Ancient Art & Antiquities, Laetitia Delaloye, “It is little wonder, then, that so many people have wanted to own this work of art.”

“This piece is so special because when you stand in front of it, you’re just blown away by the fact that a sculptor, over 3,000 years ago, used all his skills to create the most beautiful representation of the king,” she added.

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Celebrating AFCON, Egypt allow Africans to visit tourist attractions at local prices  https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/06/celebrating-afcon-egypt-allow-africans-to-visit-tourist-attractions-at-local-prices/ Sat, 06 Jul 2019 19:41:53 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701889 It comes in line with Egypt’s hosting of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), as thousands of African natives are visiting Egypt currently to support their football teams.

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The Minister of Antiquities, Khaled El-Anany, announced allowing African tourists to visit Egyptian museums and tourist attractions with the same entry fees of locals until the end of 2019, according to local media outlets.

It comes in line with Egypt’s hosting of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), as thousands of African natives are visiting Egypt currently to support their football teams.

El-Anany expressed his pleasure with the huge number of African visitors, whom he described as “our brothers.” The African tourist inflow started since the beginning of the AFCON last month.

The minster further added that Egypt dazzled the world with the championship’s stunning opening ceremony, explaining that it was organised in the “best possible way.”

The AFCON started on 21 June and will run until 19 July, with the participation of 24 national teams from across the continent. 

At AFCON’s opening ceremony, the ministry of antiquities features a statue of the famous Egyptian king Tutankhamen, at Cairo International Stadium’s entrance, aiming to promote the ancient Egyptian civilisation.

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Roadmap to the Renaissance: a dialogue of tolerance and peace https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/03/roadmap-to-the-renaissance-a-dialogue-of-tolerance-and-peace/ Wed, 03 Jul 2019 12:00:06 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701642 Exhibition presents 18 artists’ vision of the way they feel about their presence, their visions, and Egypt’s place under the Sun

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This summer, the founder of Darb 1718, famed Egyptian artist Moataz Nasr organized Roadmap to the Renaissance, a contemporary art exhibition showcasing emerging Egyptian talents as well as international luminaries from the United States, Switzerland, and South Korea.

Darb 1718 is a contemporary art and cultural centre, located in the Al Fustah area of Cairo, hidden amongst ateliers, artist studios, artisanal schools, and ceramic workshops. The city of Al Fustat, built by Muslim general Amr ibn Al’as in AD 641, was the very first Islamic capital of Egypt. For 6 centuries, it served as the epicentre of political power in Egypt. Today, Fustat is part of the Old Cairo neighbourhood.

In recent years, after the initial bloom of creative activities and exhibition spaces, there is suspense in the art community. Where do we go from here? The younger generation is looking for new directions. Roadmap to the Renaissance is a dialogue of tolerance and peace; we hold on for one more day of positivity and possibilities. Nasr challenges 18 artists to tell us in their own artistic mediums the way they feel about their presence, their visions, and Egypt’s place under the Sun.

Take my breath away

Mohamed Soudy (Cairo, 1981) with his fossilized female vertebrate, Yasmine Hazek’s (Cairo, 1989) Pregnant Bride and Mona Gharib’s (Cairo, 1981) Lovers in love series serve as windows to gaze into the inner psychology, challenges, and hardships women face in the second decade of the 21st century. Conservative, reactionary reproductive policy is making a comeback in multiple countries this year, is this a fade, or will this worrying trend continue to brew and develop?

Are wars always about defending your loved ones, your territory, and your values? Can war happen because of politics and profits, and even more superficial intentions, such as domination & national branding? Swiss national artist Alain Huck (Vevey, 1957) comments on these questions with his philosophical, effective films, Breath on Hemerocallis, and no see no bomb. Along with Egyptian sculptors Hebatullah El Khatib’s (Cairo, 1996), Mohamed El Gendy’s (Cairo, 1988) poetic, allegorical sculptures reflect on the consequences of physical conflict, and the price and sacrifices behind such conflicts.

Should I stay or should I go

Ibrahim Ahmed (Only the Dreamers Leave, Kuwait City, 1984) and Hana Beblawey (Hand & Hands, Cairo, 1995), Youmna El Sayed (Wide Angle, Cairo, 1997) and senior artist Wael Darwish (College of historical landmarks, Giza, 1975), tactfully and beautifully pinpointed and reminded us important issues and challenges that is plaguing our society. Under-employment, Labor rights, brain drain, and post-colonial dynamic continue to affect the lives of everyday people. These are not problems that can be solved by individuals. Maybe if we have patience and work cooperatively, we may be able to find a solution together. Sue Huang (New York, 1978) and Sherine Anis (Vienna, 1982?) cleverly highlight the interplay between immigration, adoption to the host country, and the increasing wave of xenophobia and hate crime in many global metropolises. 

Like a prayer

Mervat Allam (Something Tree, Cairo, 1982) and Mohamed El Mughraby (Geometry dictates, Cairo, 1985) offer their fellow Egyptian brothers and sisters a blueprint, optimism, and confidence that there might be salvation in science and technology, research, and development. How will advanced information technology, artificial intelligence, and cutting-edge robotics change the bodies and, more importantly, emotional and psychology of the Egyptian people? Filipino photographer MM Yu (1978, Manila) and South Korean videographer Kim Taejoong (1986, Seoul) showed us that whether you grew up in Manila, a city on the edge environmental collapse due to rapid economic development or futuristic, or 5G-powered post-capitalistic Seoul; one can always find beauty in the breakdown and should always find the time to dance and play.

Roadmap to the Renaissance opens at 7:30 pm, Tuesday, June 11th, 2019, Darb 1718. June 14th (Artist talk, Darb 1718). August 2nd (Finissage, Darb 1718). The exhibition will run for 8 weeks.

The exhibitions run until August 11.

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Meet lady whose award-winning museum design chronicled Ancient Egyptians creation of information security https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/02/meet-lady-whose-award-winning-museum-design-chronicled-ancient-egyptians-creation-of-information-security/ Tue, 02 Jul 2019 12:00:26 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701494 Passwords, encryptions, firewalls, anti-viruses were all presented to world for 1st time 7,000 years ago by discreet Pharaohs: Saadny

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It all started as a regular designing project of the veteran award-winning architect Dalia Saadany. The timeworn building in  the heart of downtown’s AUC’s GrEEK campus held nothing for her but the authenticity of last century when it was built. When the international ambassador of design stumbled upon what she saw as a “time machine” that took her to another era, she felt others should explore it as well.

The giant theatre turning table machine, was the star of Saadany’s fairytale which she soon turned into reality.

In a few months of intensive work, Saadany turned the basement of the private international information technology company into a museum in which she displayed the information she found proving that ancient Egyptians are the origin of this knowledge. This is proof that took her six months of continuous research.

The veteran architect’s design won the Golden award in the International A’Design Award and Competition in Italy for the first qualitative museum. The award is one of the world’s largest annual juried design competition that honours best designers, architects, and design-oriented companies worldwide. A large number of designers, almost 13,000, compete in more than 105 design fields from around the world.

Daily News Egypt interviewed Saadany to delve into her long journey of creating the basement from scratch, exploring where the idea came from, and the struggles she faced until reaching the 13th international award, the transcript for which is below, lightly edited for clarity:

What inspired you to come up with a design about the ancient Egyptian civilization?

There is not a single person that can show up telling you I was inspired by a certain thing. Anyone with a career about creativity, does get a light bulb that pops into one’s head even maybe when he is asleep. But things happen, and they lead you into deciding the steps you should take in order to reach a certain design.

I was doing another design for the same company through which I was expanding the upper floor and redesigning it. When I was removing the flooring, I stumbled upon a hatch-door through which we crawled under ground to find an 80 cm height basement that has a huge 10 metre width machine. We later discovered it was a theatre turning table machine.

The moment I laid my eyes on the machine, I knew I wanted it. Discovering it, changed the whole designing plan – opening new aspects of ideas.

I decided to dig down for two metres to actually create an actual basement to expose the machinery.

Thinking that the machine is a turning table, opened a new path of thinking, of redesigning the whole building in order for the basement to be the past, the ground floor is the present, and the higher floor is the future. For me, it looked like a time machine, and I decided to actually let it take people in time and place to the past.

But why did you choose ancient Egyptian civilisation in particular? 

I have studied and taught the history of architecture for as long as I remember. The more you read about history, the more it leads you into knowing more.

I have been reading about ancient Egyptians, and I know the civilisation is one of the most discreet ones. They did not want anyone to know anything about them. They are not friendly, and they did not want anyone to know anything about their science and knowledge. Up until this day, we are trying to figure out what they were doing.

I found a connection between the information security company and the ancient Egyptian civilisation; they both have a hierarchy. Both are connected to each other with the fact that not all employees or members get an access to the same amount of information. That’s how I started gathering information about the information security on the ancient Egyptian civilisation. The research opened a whole door of knowledge that all clearly revealed that ancient Egyptians are the original creators of information security.

Would you please explain more about the connections you found between the two sides? How did you find out that ancient Egyptians were the origin of information security?

They both run the same method. Both work under the umbrella in which your class at the entity defines the amount of information you see. 

When you think of the concept of a ‘password’, it is documented that the pharaohs had rings with shapes that determine the amount of knowledge this person has access to. This is identical to the modern concept of a password that logs a certain individual into a certain amount of information, as well at the website.

When it comes to encryption, users see a number of letters and numbers no one but the people on the other side can read and transform into a set of readable useful information. Ancient Egyptians wrote on their archways holographically which is all about symbols, and within these symbols there were other drawings that, as a commoner, you cannot read. The people whom these drawings are sent to, perfectly understand the hidden sent message.

Throughout my six-month research, I’ve come to discover that the main concept of preservation of the information saw the light for the first time by the Pharaohs 7,000 years ago to save the information from real thieves, while firewalls are currently designed to save online data from hackers.

The ancient anti-virus, which is the aggressive way of stopping someone from getting inside, attack and kill them, is the same aspect of the curse of the pharaohs in which they used two chemical materials to interact with the oxygen leading to the creation of a hallucinating acid. So, they evacuated the tombs from the air, and when thieves got in the interaction of the two materials led them into seeing things attacking them.

What triggered you into reflecting the things you found, at the walls of the museum?

Throughout modern history, we have done nothing regarding our history but slightly showcasing it. We have not done much effort about it. I wanted to do something different, I wanted the world to know that modern Egyptians are as smart as the pharaohs. Finding all of this information led me to decide to take people to a trip into the history of what their company does, which is information security.

Did you get any help from sources other than research? 

Yes! I got the help from a number of Egyptologists. They made sure that all of the inscriptions I am engraving on the walls are correct, because at a certain level, changing the wedge of the ducks’ tail changes the meaning completely.

For a while, I wanted to engrave things on the ground, but they stopped me assuring that such things are sacred, and gods’ names cannot be written on the floor.

They also told me that there are some gods I cannot put next to each other because they cannot be sitting next to each other in the ancient Egyptians beliefs.

What were the main challenges facing you building a third underground floor?

Underground water of course was the biggest, most challenging factor facing us. We were digging and all of the sudden we found water floating down from everywhere, and we were walking on very thin lines, not knowing the foundation.

We also did not have any technical drawings of the building. So, we did not know to what extent we can break away from the main structure. It is so much easier to build a new place than restoring an old one. 

What is the main message you aimed to deliver with this museum? 

I wanted to put our foot down that we are not a part of history, we created history, and the west built upon that. I aimed for young people to read about their history because it tells a lot about how ancient Egyptians were the origins of several things, just like information security, astronomy, computer science, medicine, make up, and fashion. 

I wanted people to know that young generations started reading about history.

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Egyptian actor Ezzat Abu Auf dies at 71 https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/07/01/egyptian-actor-ezzat-abu-auf-dies-at-71/ Mon, 01 Jul 2019 20:56:04 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=701445 Funeral held for late actor at Al-Sayeda Nafeesah Mosque

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Egyptian actor and artist, Ezzat Abu Auf, died in the early hours of Monday morning, after suffering form liver and heart problems at Cairo hospital.

Ezzat Ahmed Shafiq Abu Auf, 71, had been hospitalised for a month and half until he passed away on Monday. He had been shooting a film with Egyptian actor and singer Tamer Hosny, until he became very sick and had to be transferred to the hospital.

Abu Auf was a brilliant multi-talented artist. He was an actor, musician, and head of the Cairo International Film Festival for several editions.

He managed to leave his touch in all the artistic fields he worked in.

He was born in Cairo in 1948 to a wealthy family. He received a bachelor’s degree in medicine, and he and his sisters formed a band in the early 1980s that was known as ‘The Four M.’

A funeral was held for the late artist in Al-Sayeda Nafeesah Mosque for the afternoon prayer, in attendance of his family as well as the head of the Actors’ Union, Ashraf Zaki and Minister of Culture, Inas Abdel-Dayem.

“Today, Egypt has lost one of its great landmarks. Abu Auf performed in a number of unforgettable films, and series,” said Zaki.


The ministry of culture as well as the Cairo International Film Festival mourned Abu Auf.

In 2015, Abu Auf’s health reportedly started to get worse after the death of his first wife Fatima.

The late artist left behind a legacy of more than 100 works including cinema, drama, and theater.

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Egypt publishes a catalogue of Holy Family’s trip in Egypt https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/24/egypt-publishes-a-catalogue-of-holy-familys-trip-in-egypt/ Mon, 24 Jun 2019 14:05:40 +0000 https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=701001 Documentation part of ministry of antiquities’ plan to submit places into UNESCO’s Heritage sites list

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Egypt is not only the land of ancient Egyptian touristic spots, it expands as a hub for all religious tourism, and mainly Coptic ones.

The ministry of antiquities produced a catalogue of the Holy Family’s trip and main stops in Egypt, since they started from Jerusalem until they returned four years later.

 

The catalogue is published in both English and Arabic, and is divided into the main places the Holy Family visited all the way from Sinai until Upper Egypt.

Mohammed Abdullatif, a professor of Islamic antiquities at Mansoura University, stated in a press release, that he, along with a team of experts, wrote the catalogue as a part of the ministry of antiquities’ plan to document the trip in detail.

He said that the documentation is a part of a bigger plan in which the ministry aims to submit those places into UNESCO’s Heritage sites list.

The catalogue brings readers into the places with vibrant photography, alongside explanations on the location and heritage of each place. It also includes pictures and articles explaining the cultural celebrations held every year at these historic places, their route, and the traditions behind these celebrations.

Among the explained places are the Monasteries of Wadi El-Natroun, the St Mary church, and al-Muharraq Monastery in Assiut.

Abdullatif explained that the catalogue will intensively help in promoting these places nationally and internationally. Inevitably, this will have an impact in putting them on the world touristic maps.

The Holy Family did not settle in one place throughout their four-year journey. They moved from Sinai where they settled for a while in Al-Arish, Tel Basta— which is globally known for being rich with Coptic relics— and Samanoud.

They moved to Cairo afterwards, where three members settled for a while in Matareyah, Old Cairo, and Maadi, before going to Upper Egypt.

It is uncertain how long the family stayed in each city. However, stories usually say they stayed for around a week in each place. The maximum period they stayed in any place was 15 days, except for al-Muharraq Monastery where they stayed for 185 days.

The Holy Virgin Mary Monastery in Dronka, Assiut, is one of the major Christian worshipping places that receives thousands of people from August 7 to 21, annually. This is believed to be the month the Holy Family arrived in Assiut. The monastery conducts masses and baptisms daily during this period.

The Virgin Mary Monastery stands 120 metres high, giving its visitors the opportunity to enjoy a magical panoramic view over western Assiut. It is indeed a beautiful and peaceful place where one can meditate.

The Holy Family came to this place after they had escaped from Bethlehem in Palestine. They crossed the Sinai desert and passed through what is now Al-Matareyah and Heliopolis in Cairo, until they reached Mount Dronka in Assiut.

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Egypt runs country’s 1st special itinerary for visually impaired https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/24/egypt-runs-countrys-1st-special-itinerary-for-visually-impaired/ Mon, 24 Jun 2019 13:18:43 +0000 https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700990 The itinerary includes 12 statues from different pharaonic eras

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Take a moment to imagine the amount of art heritage, breath-taking legacy, and masterpieces visually impaired people are deprived of, just because they are not capable of seeing them.

 

In an attempt to open a window of light to those who want to climb out and discover the enticing, fulfilling ancient Egyptians legacy, the Minister of Antiquities, Khaled El-Anany, inaugurated the first special itinerary for the visually impaired at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square on Saturday.

The inauguration witnessed the attendance of the Egyptian Minister of Tourism, Rania Al-Mashat, and the Minister of Youth and Sports, Ashraf Sobhy. This was alongside the ambassador of Italy in Cairo, Giampaolo Cantini, and a number of other ambassadors from 16 countries.

The initiative aims to allow the visually impaired a chance to read and explore some of the showcased antiquities at the museum through a route which visitors get to explore, touch statues identical to the original ones, and read about them in the braille language.

The first of its kind initiative in any Egyptian museum, has been developed by the Italian Archaeological Centre of the Italian Cultural Institute in Cairo. This is in collaboration with the Egyptian Museum and the Museo Tattile Statale Omero in Ancona, in the framework of the programme “Vivere all’Italiana” of the Italian Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

The itinerary includes 12 statues from different pharaonic eras including the Narmer Palette for the Early Dynastic, a Triad of King Menkaura dating to the 4th dynasty of the Old Kingdom, a Sphinx of king Amenemhat III belonging to the Middle Kingdom, and a New Kingdom’s Statue of Amenhotep son Hapu.

According to a press release published by the ministry, “every object in the path is made in very hard Egyptian stone (such as granite and greywacke) and it can be touched and acknowledged with labels in braille language and electronic audio devices.”

The itinerary also provides visitors with the chance to touch and learn about a pyramidion of the pyramid of King Amenemhat III belonging to the XII dynasty, and a seated statue of the goddess Sekhmet, and the reign of King Amenhotep III.

The development of the itinerary took place with the “expertise of the Omero Museum in Ancona, where the visually impaired enjoy art with the rest of the public,” the statement reads.

It adds that the main aim of the initiative is sharing with Egypt the Italian know-how in the field through a capacity building approach.

Italy is one of the leading countries in the field of allowing visually disabled people an equal opportunity as others to explore and enjoy the heritage of nations and the artefacts displayed in museums.

The itinerary is only the start of applying the whole idea across the whole museum, as well as number of other museums across the country. All of this is in order to allow all people an equal chance to learn about the Egyptian civilisation.

The Egyptian Museum comes as the second historical exhibit to provide people with visual disabilities to learn about the history.

Last week, the ministry of antiquities announced it is applying a new system for visually impaired visitors through printing cards with the description of the halls and the showcased relics in the museum. This new system will start on Tuesday.

Elham Salah al-Din, head of the Museums Sector at the ministry of antiquities, said in a press release that this step comes to strengthen communication among all community members.

Salah al-Din also said it is considered a part of the museums’ sustainable development plan.

The cards will follow a special needs department at the museum, and the project will start running with a number of visually impaired visitors and several NGOs supporting people with vision specific needs, added Salah al-Din.

The displayed antiquities are not only limited to the Egyptian heritage, it reaches out to display the lifestyle of a particular oriental culture, such as Syrian, Turkish, and even Chinese.

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Google Falafel doodle celebration https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/18/google-falafel-doodle-celebration/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 17:20:50 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700666 Locally known as Ta’meya, the over 1,000 old fried balls are made of fava beans with herbs, spices, and some vegetables

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Through a doodle featuring a rolling cartoon falafel baking a bread and jumping inside it, Google celebrated one of the Middle East’s most traditional and favourite food.

 

The animated doodle showcased a tiny, active one piece of falafel baking the bread it is usually served in while applying the vegetables and tahini before jumping inside.

The funny, two-second doodle features falafel as an inseparable part of the eastern cuisine.

Which is true. It really is.

Locally known as Ta’meya, the over 1,000 old fried balls are made of fava beans with herbs, spices, and some vegetables.

Falafel, widely spread from the Levant to Morocco and Tunisia, however it differs in components from one area to another.

For example, in the Levant, it is mixed with ground chickpeas.

The origins of the falafel are not exactly known. However, stories say they were, most likely, made in Egypt for the first time, particularly Alexandria.

Since it is close to the Mediterranean, it was easily transferred as a recipe to the Levant. From there, it started the journey of spreading across the world.

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Netflix’s Jinn series provokes anger in Jordan https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/18/netflixs-jinn-series-provokes-anger-in-jordan/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 10:55:36 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700634 Jinn is Netflix’s first Arabic-language production. It is about a group of teenagers who discover an evil ghost, which is named Jinn in Arabic, at the ancient city of Petra

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A state of anger hit Jordan, a few hours after the screening of the first episode of the Arabic fantasy “Jinn” series last week, over claims that it contains “inappropriate scenes.”

Jinn is Netflix’s first Arabic-language production. It is about a group of teenagers who discover an evil ghost, which is named Jinn in Arabic, at the ancient city of Petra. Through six episodes, the plot goes around their reactions and the way they dealt with that evil they found.

 

 

Since the series premiered on Netflix, it was accused of promoting indecency as many scenes included local curses.

Many locals called for stopping the series on social media, this led the Attorney General of Amman to intervene and directed the cyber-crime unit in Jordan’s Public Security Department to take the necessary actions to stop airing the Jinn series.

“The series has inappropriate scenes, not usual in Jordan, and does not fit with our traditions and customs in the Jordanian society,” said Hussein Al-Khatib, head of Jordanian Syndicate of Artists.

Moreover, the Royal Film Commission of Jordan, the entity responsible for licensing film companies in Jordan, stated: “The series was produced by a global company and was aired on its platform. It means the series is not subject to Jordanian censorship.”

However, Netflix responded on Twitter: “We have followed the current wave of bullying against actors and staff of Jinn series and we declare that we will not tolerate any of these actions and words against the crew.

“We have been focusing on the values of diversity and inclusiveness, so we are working to provide a safe space for all series and film fans around the region,” Netflix added.

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‘Kefaya Plastic’ online campaign raises awareness on plastic pollution https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/18/kefaya-plastic-online-campaign-raises-awareness-on-plastic-pollution/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 10:51:19 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700629 “Kefaya Plastic” (Enough Plastic) is an online campaign that aims to raise awareness on the severe damage plastic waste can cause to humans and surrounding environment

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A short video went viral on Instagram featuring young star Ahmed Magdy suffocating by a plastic bag that he throws up seconds before he runs out of breath. The video shows Magdy surrounded with plastic wrap preventing him from moving while wearing empty chips bags.

The short video was shocking and came as part of a campaign that calls for reducing plastic waste.

“Kefaya Plastic” (Enough Plastic) is an online campaign that aims to raise awareness on the severe damage plastic waste can cause to humans and surrounding environment.

 

 

The initiative was launched at the beginning of June by a number of volunteers who agree on how serious actions should be taken against the tremendous increase of environmental pollution. The project saw the light simultaneously with the World Environment Day.

“We are destroying ourselves, as much as we are ruining the environment surrounding us. It’s about time we recognise that and take an action to stop throwing every single plastic bag and plastic empty bottles to save nature,” Zi, the founder of the campaign, director, and stylist, told Daily News Egypt.

The idea came to the young fashion designer as she was travelling abroad and came to learn that a number of European countries and India stopped using plastic bags and that customers who wish to use them have to pay for it.

“The scene was highlighted in my mind, leading me into the belief that we should do something to raise people’s awareness with the severe environmental destruction we have in Egypt,” she explained.

Through a number of Instagram photos and videos, the campaign presents artists wearing costumes made of plastic waste.

For years, Zi kept on imagining the style of an outfit made of plastic waste before she decided to make it an official campaign by designing an outfit for each celebrity.

The first celebrity she started with was Ahmed Magdy.

“Magdy is one of the most supporting stars for all environment friendly causes. He has a true passion towards everything related to raising people’s awareness and in making the society a better place for us to live in,” she shared.

The campaign targets reflecting the impact of plastic waste on human beings through three stages. The first stage is that it surrounds it, the second is that the human sinks in it, and the third is that plastic consumption turns into a lifestyle.

The first video and photoshoto taken by the staff refers to the first stage the campaign seeks to speak of. That stage show how plastic has become an inseparable part of society’s lifestyle.

For four months, Zi and her friends collected plastic waste. In her collection, the team focused on the things people “use without thinking, including empty snacks, plastic covers, and empty plastic bottles.”

“By the end of the four months, my room had black bags filled with plastic waste,” Zi said.

Although all the campaign members volunteered to work, “we were hoping to find support from a number of organisations for the cause. Unfortunately, we tried to make that come true, but we failed,” she said.

Since the first day of launching the campaign, it was met with a warm wave of acceptance and love as people expressed their support.

“We sensed that it touched many people’s hearts and effectively made a difference, despite only publishing the first celebrity we cooperated with.”

Kefaya Plastic is currently seeking financial support and its members are looking for partners. More people working together would be more effective in communicating such a critical message.

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KCC to launch Quiz on Korea Competition on Wednesday https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/18/kcc-to-launch-quiz-on-korea-competition-on-wednesday/ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 10:28:07 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700545 Competition aims to boost Egyptians' knowledge on Korean culture, says KCC' director

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The Korean Culture Center (KCC) will host its Quiz on Korea competition on Wednesday with the participation of 16 Egyptians who are interested in the Korean culture, Director of the KCC, Yang Sang Keun, said at the event that was organised on Sunday.

The winner will have the opportunity to travel to South Korea to participate in a worldwide Quiz on Korea competition that is organised by the Korean ministry of foreign affairs while the other participants will get symbolic gifts, Yang mentioned.

The competition aims to boost Egyptians’ knowledge on Korean culture, Yang noted, adding that the competition will be organised over the golden bell system which means that participants will write their answers on a small board and the winner should correctly answer all the questions before the golden bell rings thereby announcing the winner.

“We announced the Quiz on Korea competition over social media platforms before we received many applicants to have a written test. Persons who successfully passed the test will participate in our Wednesday competition,” Yang clarified, affirming the KCC keenness to have the well-cultured persons to decently represent Egypt on the worldwide Quiz on Korea that will be organised later this year in South Korea.

Moreover, the KCC will organise the K-pop World Festival 2019 on 24 July, Yang added, noting that the final place for this competition has not been chosen yet. However, it is expected to be at the Academy of Arts.

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Gayer-Anderson Museum applies Braille language cards for visually impaired https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/17/gayer-anderson-museum-applies-braille-language-cards-for-visually-impaired/ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 14:32:33 +0000 https://eklutdvotyzsri.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700863 The ministry of antiquities announced applying the new system for visually impaired visitors through printing cards with the description of the halls and the showcased relics in the museum

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For decades, the glory of ancient Egypt was only limited to those who are visually capable of seeing it. As for the less fortunate, who are visual impaired, even reading about it was not an option before the Gayer-Anderson Museum applied the Braille language system.

The ministry of antiquities announced applying the new system for visually impaired visitors through printing cards with the description of the halls and the showcased relics in the museum. The new system will start on Tuesday, in an attempt from the ministry to open a window for the visually impaired on the Egyptian history.

Elham Salah Al-Din, head of the museums sector at the ministry of antiquities, said in a press release that this step comes to strengthen communication among all community members, and it is also considered a part of the museums sustainable development plan.

Salah Al-Din added that the cards will follow a special needs established department at the museum, and it will start running the project with a number of visually impaired visitors and several NGOs supporting people with vision specific needs.

Located in the heart of Cairo’s Sayeda Zeinab district, the museum is a standing icon of the beautiful architecture of the 17th century. The place holds the name of its latest owner, Major Gayer-Anderson Pasha, who lived in the house between 1935 and 1942, with special permission from the Egyptian government.

 

Gayer-Anderson Pasha was the doctor of King Farouk and lived in the house. The museum, also known as Beit El Kretliya, is located right next to the Ahmed Ibn Toloun Mosque in the Sayyida Zeinab neighbourhood.

When the king’s favourite major left the country in 1942, he officially left the contents of the house to the Egyptian government, in return for which, King Farouk gave him the title of Pasha.

The place has a wide range of ancient Egyptian civilisation relics which the mayor collected himself while he was residing in it. This includes objects from Islamic, Coptic, and modern Egypt, with each displayed in a separate room. The museum also contains a closet filled with Pharaonic antiquities, a small statue of the head of Nefertiti and a black statue of the ancient Egyptian cat goddess, Bastet, as well as a large, beautiful portrait of Jesus and the Holy Family.

The displayed antiquities are not only limited to the Egyptian heritage, it reaches out to display the lifestyle of a particular oriental culture, such as Syrian, Turkish, and even Chinese.

The museum’s cultural importance reached TV. The Gayer-Anderson Museum has been a favourite among movie and television producers. The James Bond film, The Spy who loved Me, was partially shot in the museum, mainly in the ceremonial reception hall and the rooftop terrace. More than 40 Egyptian old films and serials were also shot in the museum, including the famous Almaz and Abdo El-Hamouly, as well as some of Naguib Mahfouz’s novels that have been turned into films. And, according to my guide, Um Kolthoum–once the mother of Egyptian songs–sang there.

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Google celebrates Ahmed Khaled Tawfik’s birth anniversary https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/10/google-celebrates-ahmed-khaled-tawfiks-birth-anniversary/ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 20:56:31 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=700180 Al-Karma publishes his latest short story collection

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With his famous square-shaped eye glasses, unchangeable hair style, and calm look, Google featured the photo of late novelist Ahmed Khaled Tawfik in a doodle celebrating his birth anniversary. Calmly sitting in front of his stories’ famous portrayed characters he spent decades in formulating.

 

The youth’s godfather, as he was always known among his passionate readers, who grew up living beneath the metaphysical world he created in his most famous novel series, Ma Wara Altabia (Paranormal), closed his eyes for the last time in April 2018 at the age of 55, due to a chronic heart condition.

 

The doodle featured the senior, smart, ironic doctor Refa’at Ismail, who was the main character of Tawfik’s Paranormal.

 

Also, in commemoration of his birth anniversary, Dar El Karma publishing house released Tawfik’s latest short story collection which he wrote just before his death. The collection was named Rofakaa’ El-Leil (The Night’s Mates).

 

The publishing house agreed with Tawfik’s family to publish the last 11 stories he wrote, on his birthday, on 11 June. The stories come to end a long career of Tawfik’s enriching writings over the past 20 years.

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‘Cartoons for Future’: Artists react to climate crisis https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/09/cartoons-for-future-artists-react-to-climate-crisis/ Sun, 09 Jun 2019 10:57:25 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=699995 Exhibition in Germany brought together 100 cartoons by international artists commenting on global climate emergency

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One hundred drawings by international artists featured in “Cartoons for Future”, an exhibition in Dortmund, Germany, portrays the school strike for the climate, plastic in the sea, mountains of garbage, traffic chaos, water pollution, and the exploitation of developing countries by Western corporations.

The illustrations offer insight into how the global emergency is being viewed from different parts of the world.

 

 

As students in Dortmund have also been taking part in the “Fridays for Future” demonstrations for some time, the mayor of the city was impressed and wanted to show his support for their concerns, therefore, he came up with the concept of an exhibition with curator and artist Bernd Pohlenz.

The “Fridays for Future” demonstration is a weekly protest on the lack of action being taken toward climate change.

“A child who is now 4-years-old will probably live to see the turn of the next century. And then you obviously start thinking about the future,” said Pohlenz, who is also a father of six children and a grandfather of four.

As the administrator of the toonpool website–a collection of nearly 300,000 drawings by 2,500 artists from 120 countries–Pohlenz had access to a large selection of cartoons and decided to choose exactly 100 of them to be put on display at the exhibition.

The artists come from all places such as the Netherlands, Australia, China and Burkina Faso — a reflection on the diversity of the drawings themselves.

Thought-provoking, shrill, in colour, or black-and-white, some are outright funny or ironic while others play on dark humour.

The drawing for the exhibition’s poster, the Mona Greta, was created by Pohlenz himself. He combined the famous painting by the humanist and naturalist Leonardo da Vinci with a portrait of the star teenage climate activist, Greta Thunberg.

From frequent flying to the exploitation of developing countries

The drawings of the exhibition are organised according to different themes, such as global meat production, cheap flights, politics, human rights, and exploitation. Some artists point the blame at various countries, depicting for example Germany’s love of cars, the ignorant climate policy of the current United States administration, or Western countries stealing resources from developing countries.

One drawing mocks the so-called environmental zones established in Germany: It shows a 20-metre stretch of road that’s car-free — but surrounded by a detour route clogged with stinking cars.

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Christie’s puts anonymous Tutankhamun’s statue on bid https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/09/christies-puts-anonymous-tutankhamuns-statue-on-bid/ Sun, 09 Jun 2019 10:51:49 +0000 https://www.dailynewssegypt.com/?p=699989 Auction house contacted Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities sending details of statue, other auctioned relics

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A head statue of the world’s most famous pharaoh, Tutankhamun, is to dazzle antiquarians next month when it goes under the hammer in London’s Christie’s auction house on July 4.

 

The unique, 3,000-year-old stone statue is expected to be sold for £4m with only one problem of not detecting its provenance.

 

The slightly chopped statue which shows the young king as god Amun is part of a long chain of antiquities that are auctioned at Christie’s for an audience fond of ancient Egyptian civilisation.

 

 

The head statue depicts the young famed king with his famous calm look, sharply lined eyes, and perfectly shaped lips.

 

Despite the fact that the origin of the statue was not announced by the famous auction house, experts explained that it was once showcased at the Karnak Temple where the tomb of Tutankhamun and most of his belongings and featuring statues were unearthed, according to the Financial Times.

 

The auction house has contacted Egyptian authorities and sent all the details of the statue; however, no official statement has come from the ministry of antiquities yet.

 

The head is not considered a new, unrecognised relic among antiquities’ collectors. It is reported to be a well-known relic that has been exhibited in Spain and Germany for students to study ancient Egyptian art.

 

Christie’s did not announce the place and time the statue was found. The auction house stated, according to the Financial Times, that it goes back to 1960’s “when Christie’s said it formed part of the collection of Prince Wilhelm von Thurn und Taxis, a German collector. It subsequently passed through the hands of dealers until bought by the current owners in 1985.”

 

This was all before 1983 when Egypt regulated its Antiquities Law by banning trade and taking relics outside the country.

Laetitia Delaloye, head of the antiquities department at Christie’s, told the Financial Times that the beauty of the statue dates back to the Amarna period, which followed Tutankhamun’s ruling decade.

 

“The beauty of the lines and the way they’re carved are a testament to the Amarna style,” she said, according to Financial Times.

 

Delaloye added on to explain that, “artists retained the new style even after Tutankhamun restored older religious traditions.”

 

Aside from the statue, there are several other relics from different eras, such as the Ptolemaic era, on sale with the starting price of $101,000.

 

 

Among the items that are to be sold a day before Tutankhamun’s statue is a late period Egyptian polychrome wood coffin for Khamhor that dates back to the 26th dynasty, a statue of a Ptolemaic era bronze cat, a middle kingdom Egyptian gesso-painted wood funerary model of a boat, and a late period fragmentary Egyptian green faience lion.

 

The auction will take place exactly one year following another bid in which Christie’s sold dozens of Egyptian antiquities in 2018.

 

One of the sold statues was a bronze statue of Ihy, which dates to the late period among the 26th and 30th dynasties.

 

Ihy, whose name means the “sistrum player,” is the son of Horus and the goddess Hathor. He is always featured playing the sistrum, a musical instrument played by ancient Egyptians.

 

In 2016, Christie’s also sold a limestone relief that dates to the new kingdom, and a rare Egyptian red quartzite head of King Akhenaten, as a part of the Resandro Collection, which contained dozens of rare relics.

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Unseen sides of Egypt https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/03/unseen-sides-of-egypt-6/ Mon, 03 Jun 2019 08:00:45 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699789 Top pictures posted on Instagram by amateur photographers

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Photography has always been a form of stating reality. It is the window through which people can look into the lives of others and the portrait that displays their daily life events.

While media portals are filled with pictures taken by famous photographers, many unknown talents use tools as simple as their mobile cameras to develop their passion for photography. Those, who have not found a platform on which to publish their photos seek to establish their own outlet by publishing these pictures on their social media accounts.

In an attempt to support young talent seeking a platform, Daily News Egypt publishes pictures taken by citizens displaying their daily activities.

These pictures are the best pictures posted to Instagram thoughout the holy month of Ramadan with the hashtag #DailyNewsEgypt. Each one of them reflects a unique side of Egypt—not mentioned in international media outlets—but that can be seen by the people actually living in the country.

Every month, the best pictures with the hashtag #DailyNewsEgypt will be reposted on the newspaper’s official account and published in the printed edition.

Daily News Egypt’s editorial team found that the published pictures represent the work of extremely talented young photographers. Moreover, they capture moments of pure beauty people rarely stop to enjoy amid the hurry of their daily routine.

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Saudi Arabia celebrates Eid al-Fitr with 13 Arab artists https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/06/02/saudi-arabia-celebrates-eid-al-fitr-with-13-arab-artists/ Sun, 02 Jun 2019 15:33:06 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699755 Kingdom to hold seven concerts in the first two days of Eid

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Celebrating the lesser Bairam (Eid al-Fitr), Saudi Arabia is to hold one of the biggest Eid festivals in the Middle East, bringing together 13 artists from across the region to perfrom by the end of the week.

Among the artists are the Egyptians Angham and Mohammed Hamaky who will perform at Dhahran Expo in Dammam.

The festival includes seven concerts over the first two days of Eid on 6-7 June in different cities across the country.

Following the country’s 2030 vision, adopted by Prince Mohammed bin Salman, what was once to be known the world’s strictest countries, when it comes to music and art, has become an open platform for various musical events, after music has been an underground affair for decades.

The concerts will also include some of the Middle East’s most beloved singers: Hussein Al-Jasmy, Asala, Andullah Al-Rweshid, Nawal El-Zoghby, and Ramy Abdullah.

The first official musical concert was held in Saudi Arabia in late 2017, and was performed by the Lebanese star Hiba Tawajy. A year later, Egypt’s pop star Tamer Hosney rocked the country with a huge concert that was sold out a few hours after it’s announcement.

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“Zodiac”: 15-episode drama series steals audiences’ minds https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/05/30/zodiac-15-episode-drama-series-steals-audiences-minds/ Thu, 30 May 2019 12:00:30 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699579 For 1st in Middle East, thriller, mystery combined together under one roof with pharaonic twist

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Soon after the drama competition kicked off in Ramadan, audiences started grabbing their chairs for their most preferred shows, and anticipating the series’ plots. Among the major famous names starring in shows with dozens of millions in production budget, the star of a short, young production series, started raising the flag of an unpredicted huge success. “Zodiac” is a 15- episode drama, which participated in Ramadan’s hot season, and strongly succeeded in attracting audience attention, and soon after the hearts of the viewers.

Taken from the original story Hazak Al-Youm (Your Horoscope For Today) by the late veteran writer Ahmed Khaled Tawfik, “Zodiac” is the first drama series screened from the late writer’s top hit novels.

The series stars a number of young faces, some of them have been only introduced to people in the past few years, including Asmaa Abu Yazed, Mai El-Gheity, Ingy Abu Zeid, Hend Abdel Halim, and Mohammed Mahran, while others marked their first real appearance in a drama show, including Ahmad Talaat, and Ahmed Khaled Saleh.

The thriller series takes audience quivering into the world of a group of university students who dig deep into discovering the mystery of a famous astrologist in order to write an investigative report about him. However, they end up finding themselves cursed with a “pharaonic curse” that leads to the death of all of them each depending on his horoscope.   

For the first time in the Middle East, a thriller and mystery are combined together under one roof with a pharaonic twist. The series screens on VIU, an online streaming platform.

Daily News Egypt met three of the show stars, Mai EL-Gheity, Ahmad Talaat, and Ahmed Khaled Saleh to know more about the details of their roles, how they prepared for them, and the backstage details.

Both El-Gheity and Talaat said that they never got the chance to read the most sold short story of Tawfik.

“When I was offered the role and knew that it was taken from the story, I was afraid to read it in order not to get confused by the written characters and the way “Zodiac” is shaped out of it. However, reading it now, I can clearly see they are two totally different paths,” El-Gheity told DNE.

Walking the same path was Talaat, who is being really presented to the audience in this show through his role (Henry) the warlock.

“All of my life, I yielded with people who are affectionate readers of Ahmed Khaled Tawfik, however, unfortunately, I did not had the chance to read this story before “Zodiac”,” he added.

Unlike them, Ahmed Khaled Saleh, who steadily spoke of his memories as he read the book at a young age, never imagined a day where he would be presenting a part of it to the world.

From Saleh’s point of view, he believes the series combines a number of unique elements, but the fact of combining the pharaonic legacy is a wining card for the show to have the attractive plot capable of getting people to follow it.

The three young stars explained that they met large number of challenges preparing for their roles in “Zodiac”, especially with the lack of an actual reference for such a genre in the history of the Egyptian cinema or drama.

“It took me a long time to portray Mariam [the character] in my mind. She is a normal introvert, that rarely takes easily to people, however, she is also kind and does not know how to break her natural stiffness,” EL-Gheity elaborated.

However, the biggest struggle was the one facing Talaat in presenting the character of sorcerer.

“I could not find any source of information about how he should talk, look like, or deal with people. The most difficult part was to draw the image of Henry in my head, and how he acts when he acts, when he is doing his rituals and bringing back the dark spirit to life. Even when I looked, I could not find any reliable source of acting in order to portray the performance from,” he added.

Talaat had to dig very deep in order to find a real warlock, who approved to open up to the details of spending time in the paranormal world, and allowed him to read some of his used pharaonic words, however he used them to revive positive energy.

“Zodiac” was announced to be the first part of a series chain of Ahmed Khaled Tawfik’s stories.

Originally, it was not planned to participate in Ramadan’s drama race. However, soon after the plan changed, and producers decided to enrol it in the schedule.

Having a 15-episode series is queer when it comes to the one-month race. Nonetheless, for the actors, it was a positive step to take, in order to break the repetitive subjects of Ramadan drama series.

“For me, being a part of a concise show, is way better that stretching the series to the double number of episodes it needs in order just to follow Ramadan path,” EL-Gheity asserted.

As for Talaat, he added that this is a plus, that makes the sow gains attraction instead unlike what people may see.

“I have been following 30-episode-long series whose plots can be all presented in just four episodes! And the rest is only a chain of boring, unimportant events, something I do not prefer to be a part of,” he explained.

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Ramadan traditions across the Gulf https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/05/30/ramadan-traditions-across-the-gulf/ Thu, 30 May 2019 10:00:36 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699470 The UAE is characterised by iftar on the ground and it has a special character in Ramadan, where tents and trailers are spread on the ground, and on the coasts of the sea as well.

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The traditions of the month of Ramadan vary from one country to another, especially in the Gulf countries, where there are many ways of celebrating and naming the nights. The inhabitants of the Gulf countries love the customs, exchanging visits, and discarding the differences before the arrival of the holy month. They are also similar in preparing houses to welcome guests on iftar tables and spending Ramadan evenings.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the most prominent in its customs and traditions in Ramadan because it is the most sacred place for Muslims due to the cities of Mecca and Medina. Many Saudis are keen to spend the holy month in Mecca and Medina and visit it from all cities of the Kingdom, in order to spend the whole month or part of Ramadan there, as spirituality is unparalleled in these two patches of earth.

Kuwait, the country in the north of the Arabian Gulf, is known for its early preparations for Ramadan. Older men, young people, and those who enjoy a vacation from work, must be present in a certain diwans and are often attached to houses there.

Diwans in Kuwait are places where men meet. In Ramadan, they turn into boards for preaching, advice, and guidance, and narrating the stories of the prophets, the companions, and the scholars.

In Oman, Ramadan markets are particularly popular.

In the markets of the Sultanate, the colours of Ramadan goods are varied to attract attention and there are essential natural materials for juices and sweets from India, Iran, Pakistan, and China.

The UAE is characterised by iftar on the ground and it has a special character in Ramadan, where tents and trailers are spread on the ground, and on the coasts of the sea as well.

In Bahrain, the youth of the same neighbourhood meet in tents prepared for the Ramadan iftar, and the familiarity increases and differences and hatred are lifted. The poor do not feel different from the rich; they all sit next to each other, eating the same food.

One of the most important customs in Qatar and the rest of the Gulf countries is usually known as “Ghabqa”. It is a well-known tradition in the Gulf region, and the families invite people to their tables after the Taraweeh prayers wearing their national garments. It is one of the ancient and traditional customs.

In the past, the Ghabqas were held in the same neighbourhood, where the people of the neighbourhood gather in one’s house or tent. The men eat and then the women. Men converse and listen to the sermons of the elders. The iftar tables spread the spirit of peace where people meet.

The word -Ghabqa is a late Ramadan dinner preceding suhoor, which is a correct Arabic word. It came from Ghobuq, the camel’s milk that is drunk at night.

In the middle of the month, Gulf families hold a celebration to encourage children and reward them for fasting.

In this social event, children celebrate by going around the village after sunset. They move from one house to another, asking for sweets or money while singing special rhythms which might differ from one region to another. Children, in this tradition, sing inherited rhythms such as “Qaranqasho yo nas, atona shwayat halwah” (Oh people, Qaranqasho time, give us some sweets), followed by “doos doos fi almandoos, hara hara fi a’sahara,” an almost meaningless song but with a pleasant rhyme to urge house keepers to give out sweets. Accordingly, house residents give out some Omani sweets or money to the children. In return, the children will sing another song praising them.

The name of this night varies between the Gulf states. For example, in Qatar, it is known as “Qarnqawh”. In Kuwait and the eastern side of Saudi Arabia, it is called “Qarqayan”. In Oman it is named Qaranqasho.

The origin of the word is to Qorat El-Ain (Watercress) in Ramadan, which means human pleasure and feeling satisfied, but the name changed over time to indicate the knocking of children on house doors.

The origin of the name dates back to the birth of Hassan bin Ali, peace be upon him, which was the night of the half of Ramadan, and when the Muslims knew the birth of Hassan, they went to the Prophet, peace be upon him, to celebrate his birth, and this time is celebrated by the Gulf States.

Among the traditions, girls’ clothing must differ from that of boys, so that the girls’ dress is a headscarf of light cloth embroidered with gold thread, accompanied by gold jewellery as well, while wearing a white headdress or a hat.

Some families provide children with the so-called Eidet El-Eid. These celebrations are held from the Maghreb of the 15th night of Ramadan until the time of suhoor.

In some countries, girls and boys clothing depends on the folklore of the country, away from the gilt and gold-threaded clothes, to express the country’s cultural and historical destination.

With development, there has been some difference in the celebrations of Gargee’an, where the gates of the streets and small neighbourhoods are also areas for the distribution of candy and nuts to children, and in high-end areas they distribute cans and contains gifts with sweets and nuts.

In some countries, such as Oman, malls and parks hold celebrations attended by children and families, who are given candy and gifts as they sing. They also hold competitions between children. In all countries, the way rich people celebrate it is at wedding halls by inviting families, friends, and neighbours.

In the past, all of these rituals were accompanied by the decoration of houses and the renting of folk bands to dance and sing. Each house keeps a basket full of candy and nuts with a cup in the middle used to give children an equal share of sweets.

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Ramadan in India https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/05/29/ramadan-in-india-2/ Wed, 29 May 2019 11:30:51 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699437 Mosques in India play a pivotal role during this month in invoking the values of benevolence and prayer. They open the doors to all for iftar at sunset and also long prayers during the night

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The first mosque in India was built in 629 AD. India is home to nearly 190 million Muslims who reside across the length and breadth of the country.

The principles of Ramadan are universal and it is no different in India where the holy month calls for practicing self-discipline, prayers, self-control, and to inculcate the virtues of charity, forgiveness, and kindness. In a country with harmonious co-existence of diverse religions and customs, Ramadan in India reflects the deep sense of unity in diversity that is evident in the streets of its cities, towns, and villages as well as in the lives of the Muslims and non-Muslims alike. The holy month also witnesses extensive humanitarian and financial aid and assistance extended to the marginalised in the form of Zakat and Sadakah (charity).

Mosques in India play a pivotal role during this month in invoking the values of benevolence and prayer. They open the doors to all for iftar at sunset and also long prayers during the night.

Ramadan in India has several historical influences which make it unique. ‘Roza’ is the Urdu equivalent of the term for Sawm in Arabic which is used to denote fasting. Suhoor – the pre-dawn meal- is known as Sehri and it traces its origins to the Persian language – the language of the royal courts during the Mughal rule.

While the Sehri meal is usually simple, parties with family and friends characterise the iftar meal. Indeed, the festive part of Ramadan in India is widely celebrated by holding iftar parties which are attended by people from all walks of life and religious affiliations. Vibrant street parties where even strangers are welcomed are not uncommon.

The larger cities rival each other in laying out lavish iftar spreads. Truly, the incredible variety of cuisines on offer during the celebrations across India make it an unforgettable experience. From the Mughalai fareat Old Delhi with its spread of kebabs, tikkas, jalebiand pheni; Mumbai’s mouth-watering phirni and other milk cream and mawa-based sweets; delectable Haleem in Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Kolkata; Rangooni Palatas in Surat; to a veritable smorgasbord of rich regional dishes in Lucknow and Srinagar, besides numerous other dishes, Ramadan in India is truly a gastronomic delight.

The holy month of Ramadan emphasises the pluralistic nature of Indian society with its diversity in religions and cultures.

The embassy of India in Cairo offers its best wishes to the Egyptian people on the occasion of the holy month of Ramadan.

Mr Rahul Kulshreshth, Ambassador of India to Egypt 

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How Muslims around the world observe Laylat Al-Qadr https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/05/29/how-muslims-around-the-world-observe-laylat-al-qadr/ Wed, 29 May 2019 11:00:21 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699427 Mosques are decorated in the last 10 days of Ramadan in preparation for the reception of Laylat Al-Qadr, and mosque workers begin to receive hundreds of worshipers in an atmosphere of spirituality

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Laylat Al-Qadr (the night of decree)is the night sought by Muslims all over the world. It is better than a thousand months. The customs are different for each country to celebrate the arrival of the night said by the Prophet to be one of the last 10 days of Ramadan, while a large number of scholars said it is the night of the 27th of Ramadan. 

In Egypt

Mosques are decorated in the last 10 days of Ramadan in preparation for the reception of Laylat Al-Qadr, and mosque workers begin to receive hundreds of worshipers in an atmosphere of spirituality. On the night of the 27th of Ramadan, worshipers in the mosque continue praying until dawn. Some scholars are honoured during the international competition for the Holy Quran and are usually celebrated. The President of the country addresses the people to celebrate.

The ways of the celebration of the presidents of Egypt have varied, such as celebrating with the family and his hometown, and some travelled to Mecca, while some of them celebrated with the people at an official ceremony.

The habits of the people of Saudi Arabia in Laylat Al-Qadr

When the last 10 days are approaching, mosques are crowded with worshipers in preparation for Laylat Al-Qadr. On the night of the 27th of Ramadan, worshipers inside the mosques continue praying until Fajr (dawn) prayer.

Libya

Muslims in Libya refrain from offering Libyan food such as “Bazine and couscous” to be present in one night only this month, the night of the 27th, as women make “bazine” in the countryside and “couscous” in the cities to celebrate Laylat Al-Qadr in mosques.

The rituals of the people of Morocco

The rituals of Laylat Al-Qadr in Morocco differ from most countries. Each region is characterised by its own rituals, from the reception of Ramadan and the preparations. However, the celebration of the Laylat Al-Qadr is very similar. All regions of Morocco gather to celebrate it between the 26th and 27th of the month of Ramadan.

This evening is characterised by a spiritual atmosphere where mosques are filled with worshipers until early dawn. Moroccan families buy good types of incense to decorate houses and mosques. They then go to visit the graves, their families and relatives to take care of them, carrying dates and dried figs.

Moroccans are also very interested in children that night. Parents encourage children to fast for the first time in their lives. Families celebrate this event by buying traditional clothes and drawing henna on their hands and taking them to the neighbourhood photographer to take pictures.

It is interesting to note that children start eating a full egg tonight after their parents just fed them half an egg because they do not fast, to indicate that they have moved to fasting. Families also prepare cousins and distribute food to the poor at the gates of mosques.

In Algeria

In the last 10 days of Ramadan, the people of Algeria are accustomed to go to the shores of the sea and to light candles of different colours along the beach. Single girls and even married women extinguish the candles with seawater, and each wishes a different wish, either for marriage or for having children or healing from a disease, repeating a specific prayer.

Tunisia

The people of Tunisia celebrate by marriage. This night, the fiancé presents gifts to his fiancée or the couple goes out together to buy gold ornaments for the wedding.

Families take advantage of this opportunity for circumcision, and then the children are dressed in traditional clothes and a fez with money inside it.  Wealthy families also circumcise young people in poor families and public events are organised.

Tunisians also tend to visit the cemetery.

Mauritania

On this night, Mauritanian families ignite certain types of incense to expel evil and evil spirits. Needles are heated and used on specific parts of children’s bodies to avoid devils.

In Sudan

Mosques are complete with worshipers, and families are keen to spend the whole night inside the mosque and take children to participate. Some distribute books and offer campaigns to introduce the Islamic religion and its ethics. They stay at mosques until dawn praying.

In Turkey

The Turks wait for the coming of Laylat Al-Qadr, like most of the peoples of the Islamic world, where the Turks are keen to exchange greetings with each other.

Thousands of Turkish Muslims and Balkan citizens gather to take part in the revival of Laylat Al-Qadr in the historic Süleymaniye Mosque in the state of Adrineh in north-western Turkey. Süleymaniye is an architectural masterpiece of Ottoman architect Sinan Pasha. Other mosques are also very crowded on this blessed night, and it is revived by reciting the Quran and performing acts of worship and singing songs and lessons after the evening prayer.

In Iran

Iranians are very interested in the Laylat Al-Qadr and people go to the mosques to raise their hands by praying to Allah and repenting and weeping till the morning. The government also allows them to arrive two hours late to work on the following day.

Iranians like the voice of Egyptian Quran reciters, especially Abdul Basit Abdul Samad.

The Iranians celebrate the night on the 19th, 21st and 23rd nights, as well as on the 27th day. They have events celebrated by the Shiites in the month of Ramadan, the 19th day, the anniversary of the beating of the emir of the believers on Ibn Abi Talib, the 21st day for the martyrdom of Imam Ali as the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan called Jerusalem, in which millions of fasting people take to the streets in the marches against Israel and its atrocities.

In India

In the last 10 days of the holy month, the Muslims of India perform prayers at mosques. Muslims are very much interested there to observe Laylat Al-Qadr and consider it the night of the 27th. They prepare for this night as if it is the night of the feast where they wear new clothes. They pray and read the Quran. On the morning of the 27th, they visit the graves and read the Quran to the dead collectively.

In Thailand

Muslims in Thailand believe that the occurrence of Laylat Al-Qadr comes with the appearance of universal signs, such as the curvature of trees. And, if a man sees these appearances and calls for Allah, he will be answered immediately as long as he seeks only one thing. The 27th of Ramadan is also when Muslims there finish reading the entire Quran.

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Revived 13th Cairo International Biennale  https://ww.dailynewssegypt.com/2019/05/28/revived-13th-cairo-international-biennale/ Tue, 28 May 2019 18:20:05 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=699355 The Biennale is organised by the ministry of culture. It is planned to take part at three venues including the Aisha Fahmy Arts Complex, the Palace of Arts, and the Egyptian Modern Art Museum.

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After eight years of absence from the cultural scene, the 13th Cairo International Biennale is to kick off on June 10, lasting for two months through which it offers audiences different international art schools in Egypt.

The Biennale is organised by the ministry of culture. It is planned to take part at three venues including the Aisha Fahmy Arts Complex, the Palace of Arts, and the Egyptian Modern Art Museum.

The Minister of Culture, Inas Abdel-Dayem stated in a press release that reviving the Biennale is an international achievement in Egypt’s art and culture scene, asserting that it proves Egyptian leadership.

She added that the Biennale successfully rose amid international biennales, since the first edition in 1984, that was brought to light by former minister of culture, Farouk Hosney.

The two-month event is planned to host 80 artists from 50 different countries. Prominent Egyptian artists like Ahmed Badry, Ahmed Kassem, Hazem El-Mistikawy, and Reda Abdelrahman, are included in them.

As for the awards, the 13th Cairo International Biennale offers participants five awards instead of three, as it used to ever since its establishment.

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